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A Deep Dive on the Avocent® ACS 8000 Advanced Console Server

IT teams are managing more sites and devices than ever, as businesses become increasingly digital. Enterprises are adopting remote working models, pursuing hybrid cloud strategies, and adding edge sites and endpoints, among other key initiatives.

Global businesses are powered by both wired and wireless networks and require high availability of devices, exceptional performance, and strong business continuity and disaster recovery capabilities. In an era of remote work, unplanned downtime does more than compromise core operations: It can take the entire workforce offline.

The Avocent® ACS 8000 Advanced Console Server delivers all the remote monitoring and management advantages of a traditional serial console, with the addition of cellular connectivity, enabling it to provide automated failover. That means that IT teams can still access and work on devices in the event of a network outage. Together, with other solutions, the ACS 8000 helps protect the health and uptime of critical network infrastructure.

This article provides a primer on the ACS 8000, why it’s unique, who uses it, and the benefits it provides. It also discusses related solutions that IT teams can use to improve out of band (OOB) management and environmental monitoring, all with the goal of driving remote networking performance at their companies.

What is the Avocent® ACS 8000 Advanced Console Server used for? The ACS 8000 is a rack-based console server that provides between eight and 48 ports and also offers cellular connectivity. As such, it is typically used by large enterprises to manage both their own and co-located data centers, as well as edge sites. When it comes to managing more sites and more devices, a rack-based 48-port console server is typically a better choice than a desktop model.

What does the ACS 8000 help manage?  Networking staff can use the ACS 8000 to access, monitor, and troubleshoot remote routers, Linux and Unix servers, switches, firewalls, uninterruptible power supplies (UPSs), power distribution units (PDUs), and storage. They then can perform OOB management of any device, no matter where it is located.

What’s unique about the ACS 8000? The ACS 8000 provides all the typical advantages of a console server, with secure in-band and out-of-band serial access that enables remote monitoring and environmental management. In addition, it offers:

  • Scale: With up to 48 ports per unit, the ACS 8000 providers greater scale than the Vertiv™ Avocent® ACS 800 Serial Console, a desktop unit that connects to up to eight devices. IT teams can streamline remote management with the ACS 8000, a rack PDU.
  • Cellular connectivity: The ACS 8000 supports both 4G and 3G cellular frequencies. That means that IT teams can access sites even during network outages, failing over automatically to cellular connectivity, the Ethernet, or analog modems.
  • Security: The ACS 8000 helps ensure compliance with data center access and security policies. IT teams can customize policies to meet business needs, as well as set up multiple access levels to enhance device protection.
  • Technology-agnostic: The ACS 8000 can be used to manage Vertiv™ PDU and UPS solutions, as well as those offered by third parties.

Who uses the ACS 8000? The ACS 8000 meets the needs of multiple key stakeholders at large enterprises:

  • The CIO is concerned about maintaining visibility into asset performance and ensuring their security and high availability. The ACS 8000 empowers IT teams to address these needs.
  • The facility manager will want to perform environmental monitoring of all devices, to rapidly troubleshoot and resolve any issues. The ACS provides real-time insight into such issues as power, cooling, and more.
  • The network administrator will want to monitor the status of devices, including PDUs and UPSs. The ACS 8000 enables the network administrator to troubleshoot issues to ensure continuous operations at sites.

Why is the ACS 8000 important? Being able to manage sites and devices in any business or technology condition is critical to driving device uptime and network performance. The ACS 8000 enables OOB management whether or not connectivity exists, strengthening business continuity.

What benefits does the ACS 8000 provide?

Like other serial consoles, the ACS 8000:

  • Reduces IT complexity, with fewer cables and IP addresses and less configuration time
  • Provides controlled remote access to devices, reducing or eliminating the need to access them physically
  • Can securely access any device with a serial port, no matter where it is located
  • Controls its system console to do remote troubleshooting and repair
  • Performs key operations even when networks are down
  • Provides zero touch provisioning (ZTP), with automatic configuration and upgrades after being booted and initialized
  • Prevents issues, such as power overload or unbalanced loads
  • Integrates into customers’ existing security systems
  • Prevents unauthorized system changes which could harm network security
  • Improves network uptime and recovery
  • Scales IT time and talent across sites and geographies
  • Reduce mean time to repair (MTTR) time and costs
  • Prevents business losses due to unplanned downtime

In addition, the ACS 8000 offers cellular connectivity, enabling this rack PDU to serve as a primary WAN interface and enable secondary failover and failback to avoid unplanned downtime.

What solutions does Vertiv provide?

The ACS 8000 can be bundled with other solutions to provide IT teams and network administrators with all the tools they need to run, monitor and manage data center options. Other potential solutions include:

Need more information?

Read How to Choose Among KVM Switches and Console Servers

Learn more about Vertiv™ Avocent® ACS 8000 Serial Consoles

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